Nouhi’s Nomad Debut Album Review

Nouhi’s Nomad Debut Album Review

Elias Swift, iNews reporter

A New York City musician named Zachary Tirgan (also known as Nouhi’s Nomad) released his self-titled debut album on March 19th. His record company, Tirgan Records was founded in 2018. For this album, Nouhi’s Nomad made an interesting choice by mixing indie/pop-rock with his Persian roots. I personally think he could have been even more experimental with it, but the styles he used blended well. 

The first track of the album is titled Hiding Home, which was also released as a single in his EP record titled Crash Test from 2018. For me, this song does not work well as the opening track. An opening track should be the most energetic, upbeat song in the album, or it should preview the theme of the album if the album has a theme. In this case, Hiding Home is a well-written piece with a nice melody, but it’s not a song that gets me excited for what’s to come. The order of the songs in this album continues down a very odd path. However, this doesn’t take away from the fact that the songs are pretty enjoyable for the most part. 

I love the softness of The Song That I Can’t Rewrite. You can really feel the pain of the narrator in these dark lyrics. Tirgan’s beautiful tenor voice adds to the power of this track. The chord progression is simple, and like most songs from this album, it’s in 4/4 time. But you don’t need complexity in a song in order for it to work. Sometimes simple is great, and he absolutely nailed it with this song. 

Number 4 is the song I actually would have wanted to be the first track, as the melody is very catchy. But I can understand why it’s the fourth song in the album, due to its name. The slide bass in the intro is so groovy and is followed by the very driving drumbeat in the verse. 

The most experimental track is Pasargad. I would also make the claim that it’s one of the best tracks. The Persian tombak percussion is very fitting with the classical melody of the guitar. The production stands out on this one as well, as an echo is added to the vocals, giving it an electronic vibe. 

I would also make the claim that Hail is one of the best songs from this album. It may be short, but it includes harmonies during the chorus, and it’s one of a couple of songs from the album that has a guitar solo! It’s a simple, yet tasteful guitar solo, as we see more of that echo-ey production working well at the right moment. 

Now, there is one song from this album that I find to be very derivative of a certain song by the band The Police, released in 1979. Message In A Bottle, one of the biggest hits The Police ever made, is the song that I was reminded of when I heard the track Paper. Now, this song is in the key of E major, while Message In A Bottle is in the key of A major. This doesn’t change the fact that the riff uses a similar note pattern on the first three beats, and the drumbeat is almost identical to that of Stewart Copeland’s. It’s a driving song, and fun to listen to nevertheless. 

While he did take the influence of other artists/bands, I must give Nouhi’s Nomad praise for some of his variety. The track Angeezeh is sung in Farsi, an Indo-European language. This song pays homage to the coming of age story that he tells in his songs. Other songs like And Love Is and Ohio give off the very late 90s/early 2000s, alternative rock vibe. 

The musical arranging throughout this album is pretty solid, although it seems to lack a kick at times. When a person is listening to music with headphones, they want the instruments to flow cleanly from the right ear to the left. Or when they listen to music on a speaker, they want a clear sound and not a buzzing sound. The producer of this album does a good job of making the sound of the album pleasant to the ear. But obviously, the production wasn’t completely perfect. 

The instrumental parts of any song or album can be impressive, but with poor production, might not sound so good. As far as this album goes, the instrumental parts are pretty simple but the clear production makes it very pleasant. The vocals of Nouhi’s Nomad are particularly clear. His annunciation of words is excellent, and I think he was trying to sing very clearly, as his lyrics are very meaningful. 

Zachary Tirgan plays the guitar and most of the bass on the album. The drummer, Casper Hall, has beats that really drive the songs. Overall, the musicianship is good for the style the band is playing. Like I said before, simple does not mean bad. Some of the best songs ever made are simple. 

While the album has its stand-out tracks, it does have a few songs that aren’t so strong. I find that Wading, Not Quite Sure, and Take It Back are all very plain. However, almost every album ever made has a bit of filler. After all, this is Nouhi’s Nomad’s very first studio album. He still has so much time to grow as a songwriter and a musician. This is album is a very creative project, and overall pretty enjoyable. I would definitely look forward to seeing him experiment more with production techniques and instrumentation.

Production has come such a long way since the 50s and the 60s, which seemed to be the era of the birth of many genres. Nowadays, we have so many tools that didn’t exist back then. It would be interesting to see Nouhi’s Nomad explore with more sounds. 

I’m not going to sit here and say this album is a masterpiece, and that it like nothing I’ve ever heard before, but it is really good. I could enjoy this album, no matter what mood I’m in. And I would go as far as to say that it sounds a lot better than most of the mainstream music filling up the industry today. I would definitely recommend this album because it can be nostalgic for people who grew up in the early 2000s and have heard bands like the Arctic Monkeys, Muse, and The Strokes. 

Final score: 7/10

Check out Nouhi’s Nomad on Spotify here: